Ever have one of those days when everything seems totally unfair? Of course you have if you are going through a divorce, especially an unfair divorce.
I talked to a woman yesterday who has a full time job and is struggling to pay her bills. Her ex has not paid child support (which was court ordered) for over a year, and she is spending money on attorneys to get the money, meanwhile eating into what she might eventually collect through a judge’s ruling. And, she knows her ex’s salary. In other words, it’s not that he can’t afford to pay it, he just knows he can get away with NOT paying it, because he is banking on the fact that she will give up because of the legal bills.
On the flip side, how about if you are the one having to pay the child support and you feel you got an unfair ruling? Maybe you have to pay what your state requires, but you have the kids most of the time. That unfairness must burn like crazy.
An unfair divorce can cause frustration that at times is almost unbearable, leading to anger, bitterness and unhappiness. So, do you become the bitter, angry ex who tells everyone how unfair divorce is? How your ex just got a brand new Cadillac and Bears season tickets, and you are working three jobs and still can’t pay all your bills? Or, (for the person paying the child support) that your ex is sitting on her butt not working and living off of you?
Guess what? Newsflash. Divorce IS unfair and everyone thinks they are getting screwed all the time, no matter what the settlement was.
So, I’m here to toughen you up. Here are 7 things to consider when it comes to your unfair divorce:
- No one cares. So, stop calling your friends and family and telling them about how much your ex is screwing you. Remember that the people you are venting to, their situation might be way worse, only they have the sense to shut the f*** up and keep their financial life private. One more thing, they DO care about you, they just don’t want to hear ever detail of your divorce and how much you hate your ex.
- Stop being petty. Are you going to go to court over $50 bucks a month? Ask yourself if what you are pissed about will really make a difference in your life.
- Your ex knows he/she is a shit. If your ex is cheating you out of what you were awarded in court, he/she is very aware of that. Deep down, they have to look at themselves in the mirror and think, “I am paying less to my children than I agreed to in front of the judge. I then bullied my ex-wife into not taking action. I am a piece of shit.” Try living with that. Guess what? You don’t have to, but your ex does. On the flip side, if someone is dependent on the child support to live, decides not to get a job and contribute, but rather to take advantage of their ex, then shame on him/her. They also know they are a shit.
- Stop feeling sorry for yourself and increase your own income. The time you are spending dwelling on the fact that you got screwed could be spent so much more productively by looking for more opportunities to increase your own income. This way, your unfair divorce won’t seem so bad. Wouldn’t it be nice if someday your child support check made no difference in covering your monthly expenses? i.e. you didn’t even need it?? Or, if the child support check you had to give your ex didn’t really make a difference? Keep persevering and that will become more and more of a reality.
- Have gratitude. Forget about what you don’t have and focus on what you have! Your beautiful, HEALTHY kids, YOUR HEALTH, your amazing friends and family, and maybe a guy/girl you’re nuts about. That’s pretty awesome. Could you use more money? Absolutely. Who couldn’t? Small potatoes in the big picture.
- Do you have amnesia? Are you forgetting about the non-working marriage that you are now out of?? At least you don’t have to live with the person who you currently feel is robbing you blind.
- Calling your attorney will cost you. At $400 an hour, just calling to complain for a few minutes will cost you $125. That’s a really nice night out or a cut and color at a nice hair salon. Think before you dial.
Again, un unfair divorce can be maddeningly frustrating. Everyone (both men and women) has been there. And, feeling cheated, either by your ex or by a court’s decision is very difficult. It burns inside you. It feels unjust and cruel.
I am not comparing murder to child support, but think about this. Can you even imagine how Ron Goldman’s family felt after the O.J. trial? It’s hard to even fathom injustice like that. I’m not sure I could handle my loved one getting murdered and then having the killer found not guilty. But the Goldman’s survived. And they fought. And they won in the end. It took years and years but it happened.
In an unfair divorce, you might never see justice, and you might always feel like you got screwed. But, the key to happiness is letting it go, focusing on all the other wonderful aspects of your life, and controlling what you can-how you live your life, your professional life, who you spend time with, how you raise your kids, and things you choose to do to be happy.
I’m not saying you shouldn’t fight an unfair divorce, but rather that you need to weigh your options carefully. If you’re not leaving too much money on the table, it might be better to let it go. That said, the right choice might be to take legal action and keep trying. Only you can decide what is right, and sometimes it seems like there are no good options. But, eventually, the answers will come to you. Just be SMART, not emotional. ANGER COSTS MONEY.
If you do let it go, remember that people who cheat people have to live with the truth inside of them, and they have to deal with God at the end of the day. Let your ex and God take care of that. You take care of your kids and yourself. Your job is happiness. End of story. And dwelling on your unfair divorce won’t bring you that, will it?